First programming post

I've been trying to decide what my first post in this section should be, and I guess a brief synopsis of my history with programming makes the most sense. I've always found computers and technology interesting, but I didn't start to seriously consider computer science and programming until high school. Unfortunately, my high school didn't offer a computer science class until the second half of my senior year, but I did my best to learn at home too. I ended up getting a BS in computer science from the University of Texas at Dallas. My professional career started during my senior year of college, when I got an internship at a major aerospace company/military contractor. I still remember my first day on the job there. I thought I had walked onto the set of "Office Space". Despite the complete lack of modern development practices and rampant bureaucracy, I still consider my 8 months there valuable. Because of that job, I know I never want to work in a cubicle farm where the dress code is enforced more than the development and coding standards. I also know that maintaining 3000 line bash scripts with no comments that were written 20 years ago SUCKS. So I turned down a full-time offer there for a lower-paying position at a small company programming casino games. It was a pretty great job compared to the corporate silliness I had previously endured. After spending about a year there, I decided I wanted to try my hand at making more traditional games as opposed to video slot machines and the like. I accepted an offer at a more established game studio that made triple-A mobile phone games. The new job was one of the most fun environments I've worked in yet as far as the people and amenities go. There were some conflicting development ideologies, but differing opinions usually mean something can be learned. To be more specific, there were two games currently under development when I started; one in C and one in C++. I was initially put on the C project (I'm not too fond of C), and quickly figured out that the code quality, and programming skill of most of the authors, was questionable. Note that I said "most". A couple of the more experienced members of that team are truly good at what they do (even if they use an inferior language :) ) and have decades of experience to back up what they say. Still, even they couldn't save that project. Luckily, the lead programmer (we'll call him "Jim") on the C++ project saved me from that hell and brought me over to his project within weeks of my arrival. I soon realized that the other guys on that project were some of the most competent people I'd ever work with. Despite management's best efforts, we released that game and it quickly became the #2 mobile game in Europe. After that project was completed, "Jim" left, and another programmer (let's call him "John") and I were thrown back on the floundering C project. Imagine two modern C++ developers being told to work on an out of control C project hacked together like a sloppy Frankenstein monster by guys who thought they were the best "coders" (I hate that word) ever. It didn't last long. One day "John" pulled me aside and told me that "Jim" was working at another small local studio and wanted us both to interview there. Long story short, we both quit and got the band back together. That's where I work now and it's pretty great. I wear whatever I want to work. I can say whatever foul-mouthed stuff I want. I can even sketch obscenities on the whiteboards during conference calls while people try to keep a straight face (it's funnier than it sounds). Most importantly though, I'm working with people who are very knowledgeable and care about the quality of what they create.